PREVIEW: Bringing Ellabeth home


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — For 47 years, there have been long periods where nothing happened in the disappearance of 25-year-old Ellabeth Lodermeier in Sioux Falls. Angela Kennecke’s latest investigation into KELOLAND Cold Cases focuses on this case from 1974.

People close to Ellabeth Lodermeier and Sioux Falls police detectives have never given up the search for her remains. In the fall of 2019, KELOLAND News covered the search along the Big Sioux River east of Sioux Falls, close to where Ellabeth’s wallet and checkbook turned up in 1992.

Ellabeth was trying to escape and abusive marriage when she met Jerry Thomas.

“She just got caught between a rock and a hard place. She really did,” Thomas said.

Jerry and Ellabeth were planning a future together. But about the time her divorce from Gene was final, she vanished into thin air.

In tonight’s KELOLAND Investigates: Cold Cases at 10 p.m., we look at Gene Lodermeier’s troubled past and why investigators believe he was responsible for Ellabeth’s disappearance. Plus, we’ll hear from her family members and see why they are so committed to “bringing Ellabeth home.”

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